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DTaP-IPV-Hib vaccine


​​​Get protected, get immunized.

  • Vaccines make your immune system stronger. They build antibodies to help prevent diseases.
  • Immunization is safe. It's much safer to get immunized than to get these diseases.​

What is the DTaP-IPV-Hib vaccine?

This vaccine gets its name from the diseases it protects against: diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis (whooping cough), polio, and Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib).

What is diphtheria?

Diphtheria is a nose and throat infection caused by bacteria. It spreads by coughing, sneezing, or having close contact with an infected person. It can cause trouble breathing or swallowing, heart failure, and paralysis (not being able to move a part of your body).

One out of 10 people who get diphtheria will die.

What is tetanus?

Tetanus is a bacterial infection that causes uncontrolled movements (spasms) in the muscles of the jaw and other muscles of the body.

Tetanus bacteria are common in dirt, manure (animal stool), and human stool. They can get into the body through a cut on the skin or an animal bite. Tetanus can cause:

  • "lock jaw," where the mouth stays closed and can’t open widely
  • trouble breathing, seizures, and death

Tetanus infection is rare because there has been a vaccine since the 1940s. Most people have been immunized against it.

What is pertussis?

Pertussis is an infection of the airways caused by bacteria. It’s spread by coughing, sneezing, or having contact with an infected person. Pertussis can cause:

  • a cough that can last for months
  • problems with eating, drinking, and breathing (especially for babies)
  • pneumonia (a type of lung infection)

In rare cases, pertussis can lead to seizures, brain injury, and death.

What is polio?

Polio is an infection of the nervous system (brain, spinal cord, and nerves) caused by a virus. Most people don’t have symptoms but can still spread the disease. Polio can:

  • lead to paralysis and death
  • spread through infected stool (poop) by getting onto hands or into food and water, and then into your mouth

What is Haemophilus influenzae type b?

Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) is a bacteria that can cause meningitis, which is a serious infection of the fluid and lining of the brain and spinal cord, blood, and other parts of the body.

Hib is spread by coughing or sneezing. It can lead to lifelong disabilities and death.

Who should get the DTaP-IPV-Hib vaccine?

Children born before March 1, 2018, and who are under age 7 years can get this vaccine. Children who are age 18 months can also get this vaccine as an extra (booster) dose.

Older children and adults may need to get this vaccine again after a bone marrow transplant.

How many doses do I need?

The number of doses you need depends on your age and why you’re having the vaccine. Children usually need 3 doses (the primary series) followed by booster doses of this vaccine or ones like it. Ask your healthcare provider how many doses you need.

To keep you protected, you’ll get booster doses with other vaccines that protect against diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis when you’re a teen and when you’re an adult.

Are there other vaccines that protect against diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis (whooping cough), polio, and Hib?

DTaP-IPV-Hib-HB protects against all of the same diseases as DTaP-IPV-Hib and includes hepatitis B. Children born on or after March 1, 2018, who are under age 2 years can get this vaccine.

How well does the vaccine work?

After the primary series of the DTaP-IPV-Hib vaccine and a booster dose, the protection is:

  • almost 100% for diphtheria, tetanus, and polio
  • around 90% for pertussis
  • over 95% for Hib

It’s important to get booster doses because protection may weaken over time.

Where can I get the DTaP-IPV-Hib vaccine?

You can get the vaccine at a public health office in your area.

Are there side effects from the DTaP-IPV-Hib vaccine?

There can be side effects from the DTaP-IPV-Hib vaccine, but they tend to be mild and go away in a few days. Side effects may include:

  • redness, swelling, or feeling sore where you had the needle
  • crying, feeling tired, or getting upset easily
  • a fever
  • not feeling hungry or not wanting to eat (poor appetite)
  • vomiting (throwing up) or loose stool (diarrhea)

It’s important to stay at the clinic for 15 minutes after your vaccine. Some people may have a rare but serious allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. If anaphylaxis happens, you will get medicine to treat the symptoms.

It’s rare to have a serious side effect after a vaccine. Call Health Link at 811 to report any serious or unusual side effects.

How can I manage side effects?

  • To help with soreness and swelling, put a cool, wet cloth over the area where you had the needle.
  • There is medicine to help with a fever or pain. Check with your doctor or pharmacist if you are not sure what medicine or dose to take. Follow the directions on the package.
  • Children under the age of 18 years should not take aspirin (unless your doctor has told you to take it) because it can cause serious health problems if taken within 6 weeks of a vaccine.
  • Some people with health problems, such as a weak immune system, must call their doctor if they get a fever. If you’ve been told to do this, call your doctor even if you think the fever is from the vaccine.

Who should not get DTaP-IPV-Hib vaccine?

You may not be able to get this vaccine if you:

  • have an allergy to any part of the vaccine
  • had a severe (serious) or unusual side effect after this vaccine or one like it

Check with your doctor or a public health nurse before you get the vaccine.​

You can still get the vaccine if you have a mild illness such as a cold or fever.

I have a fear of​ needles. How can I prepare for my immunization?

Many adults and children are afraid of needles. You can do many things before, during, and after immunization to be more comfortable. Visit Commitment to Comfort for tips to make immunization a better experience.​

More information about immunization

Current as of: July 4, 2022

Author: Provincial Immunization Program, Alberta Health Services